Roots garden was a field trip location for local churches, community programs, and volunteer initiatives. Children and adults were able to experience hands-on gardening efforts, planting, and garden maintenance. Additionally, we have the support of the Dist.211 Fremd Football team to help open and close the garden.
The Roots Community Garden sign recognizing all donors was completed and mounted during the growing season.
Lastly, donations made by gardeners were dropped off weekly to POC to help reach families that were unable to make the commitment for the 2018 growing season. This helped to provide healthy fruits, vegetables, and herbs to more families in need.
What challenges did or does your project face?
Challenge 1: Roots had an overabundance of tomatillos
Challenge 2: Lack of nutrients in soil
Challenge 3: Funding/Strengthening local partnerships
How are you working to overcome them?
Challenge 1: Resolution: Plot reassignment to better tend to the tomatillo plot
Challenge 2: Resolution: Working on compost donation and fertilizer
Challenge 3: Providing tours and reading material on the purpose and intent of Roots so that we can onboard new donors and partners
What did you or your project learn this season that might be useful to others as well?
Having observed garden yields that were especially low last season, as well as an under-utilized compost bin, the Roots Garden staff was determined to make a learning opportunity out of composting going forward. Beginning with the infrastructure, the Roots staff worked with junior high program participants from POC's Community School, as well as high school volunteers from Fremd High School, to construct three new compost bins. These bins are much more reasonable in size compared to the old single, hulking bin at the garden, have doors on their fronts, making them easier to maintain, and finer mesh lining, meaning things won't fall out and mice can't get in. Then, high school volunteers worked alongside staff to sift through the old compost pile, separating the good processed compost from that which needed more time to break down. Going forward, Roots staff will lead lessons about composting so that garden members can understand the need for a continuing investment of nutrients in their soil, and how compost offer a cost-effective means to do so.